The famous "all hands on deck" saying pretty much sums up everything you need to know about judging at NITOC! but here is some preliminary information...

The exciting return of Team Policy and Lincoln Douglas Double Elimination Out rounds will require a significant increase in judges at NITOC this year but we know our families are up for the challenge!

All parents with students participating at NITOC are expected to attend the tournament and judge at least one third of the rounds their student(s) compete in during the tournament.

Parents with multiple students, or students in multiple events will need to judge even more rounds to cover the needs created by multiple entries (or have your friends and fellow club parents judge to help you meet your number of required rounds).
The pre-tournament estimates for judging are based on the following mathematical requirements at the time of registration. The number of judges needed to covered each event entry is as follows:

  • Each Speech event = 2 preliminary rounds

  • Each Lincoln Douglas debate entry = 4 preliminary rounds

  • Each Team Policy debate entry = 2 preliminary rounds

  • Each Parliamentary debate entry = 2 preliminary rounds

All families registering for NITOC will provide a judge for a minimum of 8 preliminary rounds of debate, speech or a combination of both.
These numbers are not additive, meaning parents are not expected to judge 8 preliminary rounds plus the numbers noted above. If the numbers noted above equal less than 8 preliminary rounds, then the parent(s) must judge 8 preliminary rounds.

Each family registering for NITOC must also judge the following Outrounds:

  • One Outround of Speech

  • One Outround of Lincoln Douglas, Team Policy, or Parliamentary Debate

  • One round of Breakout Impromptu (either preliminary rounds or an Outround)

The key to getting to see your students compete and make your judging commitment is to judge during debates if your student is in speech event, and to judge speech if your student is in debate. What do you do if your happy children are in both? Mix it up! You can also judge the opposite style of debate of your son or daughter. Plan on judging back-to-back rounds. As this is the final tournament of the year, NITOC ballots don't require the detailed analysis of each debate case or thorough critique of each individual speech. What the students do want to know, and what you should include on your ballot, is why the student(s) won or lost the debate and why the student was given a particular placement in each speech round.

If you have multiple students entered in multiple events you will be busy judging. Have your friends and fellow club mates judge a round for you so that you can see your students compete.

We recommend arriving at the ballot push table one hour prior to a round so all the ballots aren't "gone" when you get to the tables. The famous "NITOC Dots" will be in use to indicate how clubs are doing, so grab a ballot, get a sticker, and enjoy giving notes to our feedback hungry competitors!Everyone attending is considered tournament staff and one of the most important staff roles is judging. Judging is a wonderful opportunity to serve at NITOC and judging helps us keep the tournament running on time. We truly appreciate our parent judges!

Judging & Balloting Guidelines 2015
"Now this is our boast: Our conscience testifies that we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially in our relations with you, with integrity and Godly sincerity." 2 Cor 1:12a NIV

Judges may:
1. Judge students from their state or region and from other states.
2. Judge the same student in multiple speech events.
3. Judge the same debate student/team in different debate events.

Judges may not:
1. Judge students from their club, their own children, relatives, close friends, or those they have coached.
2. Judge the same speech event more than one time, unless asked by ballot admin to do so.
3. Judge a debate student/team more than once at this tournament in each form of debate.

While we hope that parents will be able to watch their students who break to outrounds, in the early outround parents should be prepared to take a ballot.
Parents, alumni siblings, & coaches of competitors in speech should not judge an event in which their child/sibling is still competing unless asked by ballot admin to do so.

To all judges:
1. DO NOT disclose speech results to anyone during the tournament.
2. DO NOT disclose debate decisions to anyone during this tournament.

Ballot Push:
1. Judges will wear their assigned code nametags to the ballot table.
2. Judges will be handed a ballot without a club conflict & their judge number will be recorded.
3. Ballots will be handed to judges - judges do not choose ballots.

Guidelines for Semifinals and Finals:
1. Parents may not judge events in which their child is still competing
2. Alumni may not judge events in which their sibling is still competing
3. Coaches, parents, alumni may not judge events in which a student they coach is still competing.

Judge Panel Construction Guidelines:

1. Anticipated sizes for Outround Judge Panels:
• For Speech
ο Semis – 5 judges
ο Finals – 7 judges
• For Debate
ο Semis – 7 judges
ο Finals – 9 or more judges

2. On 5 Judge Panels
• 1 parent
• 1 alumni
• 1 community
• Additional two judges are not specified

3. On 7 Judge Panels
• 2 parents
• 2 alumni
• 2 community
• Additional judge not specified

4. On 9 or more Judge Panels
• 3 parents
• 3 alumni
• 3 community
• Additional judges not specified

Guidelines for Parliamentary Debate
1. Coaches, parents, and alumni may assist teams during preparation time and then judge other teams for the same debate round, through the Quarterfinal round of the tournament
2. Coaches, parents, and alumni may not judge during the Semifinal or Final Rounds if they help any team during preparation time
For all rounds, ballots will be preferentially distributed to community judges.
The tournament must stay on schedule and any of the above guidelines may necessarily be sacrificed in order to keep the tournament running on time.

Help make NITOC 2015 the BEST NITOC EVER by judging for the glory of God.
The Stoa Board of Directors